This recipe is inspired by my ingredient shopping miscalculation. For my latest batch of kimchi, I ended up with 2 extra radishes. I didn’t want it to go to waste, so I consulted one of my Korean cuisine cookbooks to cook with it and found a recipe for Mu Guk 무국 (literally, radish soup).
The traditional mu guk is made with beef, but I don’t have that on hand – so I improvised with ground pork.
- Ground pork (or beef. I stay away from ground chicken and ground turkey, for personal reasons. I’m sure you can substitute.)
- Radish, chopped into thin manageable sizes (I used the Korean radish. I’m sure you can use the kind you find in your market)
- Onions, chopped into thin rings
- Garlic, minced
- Soy sauce / fish sauce
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- Cooking oil
- In a bowl, mix about a tablespoon of soy sauce/ fish sauce per pound of ground meat and salt and pepper to taste.Set aside.
- Heat up a some oil in a big soup pot, and stir fry the garlic and onions, until the onions get transparent.
- Add ground meat, keep stirring until halfway cooked.
- Add radish, stir fry a bit.
- Add enough water to cover the radish. Bring it up to a boil then simmer until everything is cooked.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper. If you add more soy sauce, the soup will turn brownish. If you add more fish sauce, it will be more clear. Don’t sweat it if you don’t have fish sauce – soy sauce is good enough to use. If none, then miso paste or doenjang.
- Serve by itself or with bread, or white rice… and a side of kimchi.
According to my friend, this soup tastes so “refreshing” but is very filling. This dish probably wins points in the calorie counting counting game and won’t leave you hungry right away. You drastically reduce the calorie value of this dish if you put in less ground meat, just like how much I have in the photo. More vegetable, less meat. Calorie counting win!